Tuesday, October 28, 2014

A Question of ... getting to work!

I spent most of yesterday on the computer and didn't write a single word.

Yep. and I wasn't looking at Facebook either. I was doing routine maintenance on websites, newsletters, correspondence, uploading a video to Youtube, and you name it. Funny how we can get bogged down in details.

I need to start writing because -- I need to. If that makes sense to anyone but another writer.

And, I need to start the third book in my Boundaries trilogy. Yes, the third. I'm happy to report that the second book, "A Question  of Loyalty," was accepted by Astraea Press. Thank you, Stephanie Taylor, publisher!

This time, Nathan and Caroline honeymoon in the newly accessible country of Floriana. Floriana is composed of Florida, the lower sections of Georgia, Mississippi, Alabama, and Louisiana.

The honeymoon starts off with an attempted assassination, and the two gamely try to figure out why and by whom they are targeted.

For those who insist Thomas Jefferson would never have accepted the crown and become king of the United States, all shall be revealed in book three: A Question of --- Something.

So I'd better get going. Even though this series is a fantasy, I do need to do some research. Sigh.

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

How one thing leads to another

We've all heard the story about the woman who bought new decorator pillows for her sofa and ended up with a new furniture suite, new curtains, new carpet and freshly painted walls.

One thing does lead to another, as I've discovered. Saturday, I decided to clean the den. If you haven't seen my den, let me explain that it was intended to be a two-car garage but the builder decided mid-way to convert it to add more living space. It is a big room, big enough to hold both living room and dining room furniture and leave space to swing the cat. (Not that we do, I hasten to add.)

Anyway, I was washing all the cut glass bowls and knick-knacks I have sitting around on bookcases and the wall-length chest my Dad made when we moved here. It was originally planned to hold the kids' toys, but now that they have moved out, it holds our Christmas and other seasonal stuff.

After washing everything submersible, and dusting every surface, I looked at the windows and thought to myself that they could use a little cleaning. So I took down the curtains and threw them in the washing machine and tackled the windows. In between spraying glass cleaner and wiping the panes dry, I hung the curtains on the line. With the sun and breeze, they dried quickly. And wrinkly.

I finished the windows and swept the floor. My last chore was to iron the curtains and rehang them.

That's when the fun started. The bracket that held the topmost curtain rod had pulled loose and didn't want to go back.

I called Jim, and he concluded that the nail holes were too big and he needed to replace the nails with screws.

He needed a ladder. I had used the little kitchen step stool, and was just able to reach high enough to sort of fling the rod and hope it would slip into place, but he needed a little more height to aim his screwdriver.

So I trudged outside to fetch the eight-foot stepladder we keep under the deck. I didn't want to drag it up the deck stairs and through the kitchen, so I carried it around the house and in through the front door. In case you are wondering, Jim has a balance problem and should not be carrying stepladders around, so that is why the job fell to me.

I know, he shouldn't be climbing ladders either, but he got a little tetchy when I mentioned this. A wise woman  knows when to zipper the lip.

He got the bracket firmly secured and as insurance, redid the lower one as well.

While he was doing that, I got out the spray bottle again and washed the glass on a picture hanging by the window. If I hadn't been standing there watching Jim work, I wouldn't have realized how dirty it had gotten.

When he was finished, I rehung the curtains, took the ladder back outside, then came back inside and swept the floor again because -- did I mention we keep the ladder outside? -- because it dripped clumps of mud all over my clean floor.

So we have a clean room and everything is sparkly and the sun shines brightly through the spotless windows.

And since I have cleaned the den, maybe I ought to clean the living room next...


Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Mom was right

Something we should all remember is that nothing is lost in the vast, labyrinthic universe of the Internet.


This can be a good thing or a bad thing. Recently, I discovered it to be a very good thing, indeed.

I wanted to re-post an essay I'd written over a decade ago. I first published it on an a now-defunct website called "Cancer Can't" that I closed down when I became too lazy busy to  maintain it properly.

Several years and a few computers later, all traces of that website were erased -- at least on any devices I own. So I did a search, putting in the key words: my name, the website name, and the word "cancer."

And up it popped.

I was able to copy and paste it into a new blog, and was happy.

This was a fortunate outcome, but I'm afraid others may have a different, and not so happy, story.

Take the writer who reacted badly to a review she didn't agree with. that was re-posted to oh, probably a million people, making her not only look bad, but stopping her career before it started.

Or the pictures posted during a party at which you may have drunk a tiny bit too much, that no matter how you try, you can't erase. Ever.

Neither of those things happened to me, but I read about them and took them as cautionary tales.

Mom always said if you can't say anything nice, don't say anything at all.

Still good advice. The Internet is a great tool, but like a chainsaw, it can be unforgiving.

Oh, if you want to read the essay, it can be found at www.mimosamorningswriters.wordpress.com and scroll down to Oct. 2.